Genocide. The Price of Leading from Behind.

Genocide. The Price of Leading from Behind. August 7, 2014


Iraq. It’s not looking good.

Earlier today, I posted: “Iraq. Genocide. ‘Never Again’ Should Cue Something More Than A James Bond Movie.”

At that point, the WSJ was reporting that the US Military might start to get involved, particularly with dropping supplies to the Christians and other religious minorities who are being forced out of their homes as the Islamic State advances.

Pope Francis made an urgent appeal today. Some bullet points –

  • The attacks are being waged upon “defenseless populations.”
  • He urges the international community to protect all those affected or threatened by the violence
  • And to guarantee all necessary assistance – especially the most urgently needed aid – to the great multitude of people who have been driven from their homes, whose fate depends entirely on the solidarity of others.

Meanwhile, very serious and detailed news from Iraq indicated ABSOLUTELY NO ACTIVITY on behalf of these persecuted people, even though various countries and the international community have the resources to mobilize quickly. After all, it’s not like they’re not in the area or nearby already…

“Daash is testing our defenses,” said Rosg Nuri Shawess, a top Kurdish military commander, pointing to two towns that had fallen to the Islamic State, Qaraqosh and Bartella, that were visible in the distance. “And if we don’t show them we are strong here, then we have lost Irbil.”

Shawess, who also is a member of the Iraqi government’s national security council, called the situation “extremely critical” as he examined the foremost strong point along the highway. He described the Kurdish military plight as “too much distance to protect, with too few men and not enough weapons.”

“The Americans keep saying they will help us,” he added as surveillance planes or drones, likely American, circled far above the clouds. “Well, if they plan to help they had better do it now.”

It was unclear if the United States planned to do anything to help fend off an Islamic State thrust at Irbil, where the U.S. also has recently expanded its CIA station and set up a Joint Operations Center to coordinate military activities with the Kurdish and Iraqi governments.

And here’s a very troubling piece of information –

Kurdish officials repeatedly have claimed that the United States and the Iraqi government in Baghdad have refused to send military aid and that they have only Saddam Hussein-era weapons and limited ammunition to counter Islamic State forces that are armed with advanced American weaponry.

“Armed with advanced American weaponry”? Now that should definitely demand some investigation from the U.S. and others.

But the biggest lesson so far should be that leading from behind doesn’t work. Iraq was invaded for the purpose of “democracy building.” What about military involvement when innocent people are being slaughtered and exiled simply because they have different religious beliefs than those in control? It’s fundamental human rights violation. It’s genocide.

I’m certain that I don’t have all the information. I can only go by what’s reported in the media. But we do know that a genocide is under way. In my previous post, I quoted Dan Hodges from The Telegraph. And I can’t think of a more appropriate way to close this piece:

For once, just for once, can we actually do something? The UN, Nato, the US and the UK. It doesn’t really matter whose umbrella its under. For once let’s demonstrate that the billions of pounds we spend on the most powerful military forces in human history can actually stand up to a bunch of petty hoodlums with machetes, or AK47s, or Toyota 4x4s.

Just this once let’s not wait. For the book. And then the film. And then the hand-wringing and empty pledges that “we will ensure this never happens again”.

Just this once let’s actually stop them being killed with their families.

Just this once. Stop leading from behind.



American military forces bombed at least two targets in northern Iraq on Thursday night to rout Islamist insurgents who have trapped tens of thousands of religious minorities in Kurdish areas, Kurdish officials said.
Word of the bombings, reported on Kurdish television from the city of Erbil, came as President Obama was preparing to make a statement in Washington.

ANOTHER UPDATE. Yes. No. Maybe so.

From HotAir, looks like supplies have been dropped. Military action is being disputed.

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